by Bruce Strand, Sports editor
Elk River’s Dave Christensen, a past State Amateur champion and former pro, played his first golf tournament in five years this week and showed he hadn’t lost his touch.
Christensen tied for sixth in the State Amateur with 75-67-69–206 in three sweltering rounds at White Bear Yacht Club in Dellwood from Monday through Wednesday. His 67 Tuesday was low round of the day.
“I was a pro for seven years and after that, I put away the clubs for a few years,” said Christensen, 34, who rejoined Elk River Golf Club last year after moving back with his wife and two sons. “It was nice to be in a tournament again … My last one was in 2006.”
Donald Constable of Spring Hill Golf Club was the champion with 66-71-69–206, by a three-stroke margin over Dillon Schultz of Springfield and Adam Riddering of White Bear Yacht Club.
Christensen, a1995 ERHS graduate, won the State Am in 1997 when he was playing for East Tennessee State. He turned pro on the Canadian and Nationwide tours for a total of seven years.
Since leaving golf, he works in costumer service for Sungard, an IT company. The Christensen’s lived in Colorado for seven years before he was transferred to his home state last year.
After qualifying at Wapicada, Christensen got right back on the leader board at state, which had 157 entrants.
After his 67 Tuesday he was tied for fourth.
“Nothing spectacular, I just made the putts I needed and everything fell into place,” he assessed. “I like those ho-hum rounds.”
The golfers labored three days with temps close to 100 degrees. Christensen said the heat’s biggest affect on him was sweaty hands.
“I could hardly hang onto my clubs. It might as well have been raining, my hands were so wet,” he said. “You just have to hang on and do the best you can, and hit a little lighter.”
Christensen said he plans to play in the ERGC tournament in August.
Rogers’ Mac Buege places 11th
McCabe Buege of Fox Hollow, the 2011 Rogers graduate headed for Central Florida, placed 11th with 71-72-72–215.
His brother Colton, 2010 RHS grad and current Gopher, tied for 43rd with 73-72-77–222.
Kline places 12th, leads big Links contingent
The Links at Northfork had seven golfers qualify and Alex Kline, ERHS senior-to-be, led them with 74-73-69–216, tying for 12th place.
Tim Peterzen former Elk and current Gopher, tied for 27th with 73-74-72–219. Conrad Hahne of Elk River, junior-to-be at a South Carolina golf academy, tied for 38th with 69-77-75–221. Theo Frentzos, former Elk and St. Cloud State player, tied for 43rd with 76-7076–222.
Links members qualifying but not surviving the cut were Greg Melhus 77-73-150, John Butler 73-84-157, and Andrew Peterson 84-79-163.